Venator Pleased by Demand Recovery

Venator Materials Plc of the UK has reported a third quarter net loss of US$42 million on revenues of US$474 million compared with a net loss of US$19 million on revenues of US$526 million in the corresponding period of 2019. The company notes that titanium dioxide sales volumes increased by 2% compared with the second quarter of 2020, indicating a gradual recovery.

Simon Turner, Venator’s CEO, said, “I am pleased by the gradual recovery in demand for most of our products. We saw broad improvement in sales volumes resulting in an increase of 3% compared to the second quarter, notwithstanding a seasonally weaker third quarter and the impact of Hurricane Laura on our TiO2 joint venture in Louisiana.”

Venator‘s Titanium Dioxide segment generated third quarter revenues of US$343 million, a decrease of 13% from the same period of 2019. The decrease was primarily due to an 11% decline in TiO2 sales volumes, a 2% decrease in average local currency selling prices and a 2% unfavourable impact due to mix and other, partially offset by a 2% favourable impact from foreign exchange. The segment’s adjusted EBITDA in the third quarter was US$21 million, a decrease of US$30 million from the same period of 2019. The decrease was attributed to lower revenue and lower plant utilization, resulting in higher production costs.

Venator’s Performance Additives segment generated third quarter revenues of US$131 million, an increase of 1% compared with the same period of 2019. The increase was primarily attributable to a 2% increase in the average local currency, a 2% favourable impact of mix and other and a 1% favourable impact from exchange rates, partially offset by a 4% decrease in sales volumes. The segment’s third quarter adjusted EBITDA was US$5 million compared with US$13 million for the same period in 2019. The decrease was primarily attributable to lower plant utilization, resulting in higher production costs.

Tronox Ltd of Stamford, CT has reported third quarter revenue of US$675 million compared with US$768 million in the third quarter of 2019. The company recorded a net income from continuing operations of US$902 million versus a net loss from continuing operations of US$12 million in the same period of 2019. The net income was primarily due to the reversal of a portion of U.S. valuation allowance relating to net operating loss carry forwards resulting in a non-cash benefit of US$895 million.

Jeffry Quinn, Tronox’s CEO, commented, “Our third quarter results continue to reflect the strength of our vertically integrated business and our ability to optimize our operations across a variety of business conditions. The trajectory moving out of the third quarter is indicative of the improving market conditions we expect through the end of the year and into 2021. While the macroenvironment remains uncertain, we anticipate a favourable deviation from normal fourth quarter seasonality, resulting in strong fourth quarter TiO2 sales volumes at or above third quarter 2020 and fourth quarter 2019 levels.”

Tronox’s titanium dioxide sales in the third quarter of 2019 at US$543 million were 10% lower than in the prior year quarter. The company’s titanium feedstock and co-products sales of US$76 million were 22% lower. Zircon sales of US$56 million were 18% lower than in the third quarter of 2019.

The Chemours Co of Wilmington, DE has reported a third quarter net income of US$76 million on net sales of US$1.20 billion versus a net income of US$75 million on sales of US$1.39 billion in the same period of 2019.

Chemours’ Titanium Technologies segment generated sales of US$612 million versus US$614 million in the prior year quarter. Volumes were up 4% versus the prior year third quarter, a result of demand recovery in the architectural coatings, laminates and plastics markets. Global average selling prices were down 5% on a year-over-year basis. Segment adjusted EBITDA decreased by 6% to US$129 million.

Chemour’s Fluoroproducts segment net sales were US$533 million in the third quarter, down from US$636 million in last year’s third quarter. Volume and price declined 11% and 5%, respectively, on a year-over-year basis. Volumes declined primarily due to demand weakness in fluoropolymer products, partially offset by nascent signs of market recovery led by increased customer demand for refrigerants, particularly in the automotive industry.

Volume 34, Issue 23

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